Greenwood Roadway
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 20
  1. #1
    Addict
    Points: 63,248, Level: 77
    Level completed: 99%, Points required for next Level: 2
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran50000 Experience Points
    jumbopackage's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,474
    Points
    63,248
    Level
    77
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 21
    Given: 10

    Greenwood Roadway

    I had never heard of this, but it's fairly interesting to me. Apparently, back in the early-mid 60s, we had a legit, world-class road racing course right here in central Iowa.

    It hosted several big-time races in it's history, including some SCCA races, and a USRRC (Can-Am series now) race. There was even a USAC race there during 1965.

    The guys who raced on it read like a who's who of racing in the 60s. Ed Leslie, Chuck Parsons, Ken Miles, Al Unser etc.

    Greenwood Roadway

    Google Maps

    Greenwood Roadway - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    It has fallen into disrepair, and is currently occupied by construction equipment. It appears that financial difficulties put it under, but I find it a very interesting little piece of central Iowa history that I knew nothing about until I was poking around looking for information about the Des Moines Grand Prix.


    "Homemade beer, after all, is like a democracy. Every so often, youíre gonna hate what comes out of it. But when itís good, itís the best." - woot.com

  2. #2
    Legend
    Points: 209,822, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 18.0%
    Achievements:
    SocialCreated Album picturesVeteran50000 Experience Points

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    50131
    Posts
    13,909
    Points
    209,822
    Level
    100
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 439
    Given: 646

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    That looks made for a MotoGP race. I can dream...



  3. #3
    All-Star
    Points: 20,605, Level: 43
    Level completed: 84%, Points required for next Level: 145
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran10000 Experience Points
    Cyclone90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Johnston, IA
    Posts
    1,406
    Points
    20,605
    Level
    43
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 7
    Given: 35

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Wow, great find.



  4. #4
    Prospect
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Cedar Rapids
    Posts
    48
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 0
    Given: 0

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Believe it or not, I have raced on this track! It is pretty torn up, but my family is involved in the Iowa British Car Club based out of the DM area. There are random events every once in a while and we went out to Greenwood about 2 years ago. There is actually a member who has a handful of old Triumphs (TR-3's I believe) who raced there in the day. His name is Chuck Maguire. Either way, crazy you brought that up, but it sure was fun, even though the condition is awful.



  5. #5
    Addict
    Points: 175,634, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 3.0%
    Achievements:
    SocialVeteran50000 Experience Points
    SplitIdentity's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ames
    Posts
    8,240
    Points
    175,634
    Level
    100
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 177
    Given: 23

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    I remember my dad telling me about it when I was little... he made mention of it every time we went down to the lake. Sounds like it was a lot of fun... to bad it's just another little piece of history Indianola let die.


    The artist formerly known as SouthernHawk

  6. #6
    Addict
    Points: 59,836, Level: 75
    Level completed: 86%, Points required for next Level: 214
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran50000 Experience Points
    simply1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Salt Lake City
    Posts
    5,612
    Points
    59,836
    Level
    75
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 71
    Given: 7

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Nifty



  7. #7
    All-Star
    Points: 48,109, Level: 67
    Level completed: 83%, Points required for next Level: 241
    Overall activity: 4.0%
    Achievements:
    SocialVeteran25000 Experience Points
    wesley_w's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Ames, Iowa
    Posts
    1,658
    Points
    48,109
    Level
    67
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 47
    Given: 0

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    I'd forgotten all about this racetrack but my uncle from Indianapolis and my dad took me to a race there when I was a kid. Probably that 1964 race. I noticed Jim Hall was third in that race and years later his Chaparral (the yellow submarine) won the Indianapolis 500 with Johnny Rutherford driving. That was in 1980 but the year before Al Unser Sr drove the Chaparral and was running away with the 500 when something broke on the car. I can't remember what broke so I'll have to look it up.
    Jim Hall was an innovator and his Chaparral was one of the early ground effects racecars.

    Good find Jumbo!! Thanks, it brings back memories!!!


    Iowa State Football Photos from the past
    http://photos.winterinkphotography.com/p928725649

  8. #8
    Addict
    Points: 63,248, Level: 77
    Level completed: 99%, Points required for next Level: 2
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran50000 Experience Points
    jumbopackage's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,474
    Points
    63,248
    Level
    77
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 21
    Given: 10

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Quote Originally Posted by TaDelt View Post
    Believe it or not, I have raced on this track! It is pretty torn up, but my family is involved in the Iowa British Car Club based out of the DM area. There are random events every once in a while and we went out to Greenwood about 2 years ago. There is actually a member who has a handful of old Triumphs (TR-3's I believe) who raced there in the day. His name is Chuck Maguire. Either way, crazy you brought that up, but it sure was fun, even though the condition is awful.
    Awesome story! I saw that Living in Iowa did a piece about it a few years back. Touring car racing is something that I just love to watch.

    Quote Originally Posted by wesley_w View Post
    I'd forgotten all about this racetrack but my uncle from Indianapolis and my dad took me to a race there when I was a kid. Probably that 1964 race. I noticed Jim Hall was third in that race and years later his Chaparral (the yellow submarine) won the Indianapolis 500 with Johnny Rutherford driving. That was in 1980 but the year before Al Unser Sr drove the Chaparral and was running away with the 500 when something broke on the car. I can't remember what broke so I'll have to look it up.
    Jim Hall was an innovator and his Chaparral was one of the early ground effects racecars.

    Good find Jumbo!! Thanks, it brings back memories!!!
    Great story Wesley. I was reminiscing about the olden days of Indy (well - olden to me - I don't remember much before the mid 80s) with a guy I was on a plane with who is a race engineer for a Formula Mazda team. We both agreed that the current spec cars just aren't nearly as much fun to watch as the craziness that they used to drag out in the past. The Chaparral is a great example of that.

    All the innovation seems to have been axed in the name of cost-savings and "better racing". Ovals just aren't the same as a winding, hilly course.


    "Homemade beer, after all, is like a democracy. Every so often, youíre gonna hate what comes out of it. But when itís good, itís the best." - woot.com

  9. #9
    Addict
    Points: 63,248, Level: 77
    Level completed: 99%, Points required for next Level: 2
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran50000 Experience Points
    jumbopackage's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,474
    Points
    63,248
    Level
    77
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 21
    Given: 10

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Quote Originally Posted by dmclone View Post
    That looks made for a MotoGP race. I can dream...
    In the wikipedia article, it says that there was at least one AMA National Championship race there.

    After digging a bit, it seems that the USAC race they held there in the early spring of '65 tore the track up pretty bad. Probably the ground was still soft from the winter, and I'm sure the asphalt surface wasn't terribly thick, and those beastly stock cars were just too much for it to handle.

    My guess is that the repairs to the course, coupled with anemic attendance, would have sunk it into debt it could never have crawled out of.

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dd8Q4Op58wk]YouTube - Greenwood Roadway - Sunbeam Tiger[/ame] is a video of a "lap" from sometime last fall

    It looks like that track would have been a TON of fun to drive around in it's heyday. I can certainly see that spectator access could be a problem, though.


    "Homemade beer, after all, is like a democracy. Every so often, youíre gonna hate what comes out of it. But when itís good, itís the best." - woot.com

  10. #10
    Pro
    Points: 37,728, Level: 59
    Level completed: 90%, Points required for next Level: 122
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    VeteranCreated Album pictures25000 Experience Points
    HOTDON's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Fort Dodge, IA
    Posts
    2,391
    Points
    37,728
    Level
    59
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 0
    Given: 0

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    That is a cool video. That asphalt is a mess. Not a very wide track, and there are a number of trees just feet off the pavement. Would have made for some pretty tense passing situations.



  11. #11
    Addict
    Points: 123,597, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 12.0%
    Achievements:
    SocialVeteran50000 Experience Points
    ianoconnor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Des Moines
    Posts
    7,520
    Points
    123,597
    Level
    100
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 529
    Given: 1,107

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Wow, this is really neat. It would be cool if someone had the funds to restore it.



  12. #12
    Pro
    Points: 37,728, Level: 59
    Level completed: 90%, Points required for next Level: 122
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    VeteranCreated Album pictures25000 Experience Points
    HOTDON's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Fort Dodge, IA
    Posts
    2,391
    Points
    37,728
    Level
    59
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 0
    Given: 0

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Here's a map link so you can see the full layout:

    Google Maps



  13. #13
    Addict
    Points: 63,248, Level: 77
    Level completed: 99%, Points required for next Level: 2
    Overall activity: 0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran50000 Experience Points
    jumbopackage's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,474
    Points
    63,248
    Level
    77
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 21
    Given: 10

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Quote Originally Posted by ianoconnor View Post
    Wow, this is really neat. It would be cool if someone had the funds to restore it.
    It appears that there have been some attempts to do so. International Union of Operating Engineers Local 234's apprenticeship program owns the property as it is, and they do not seem overly interested in interrupting their program with people showing up to race cars all the time. I can't say that I blame them.

    Though what better job for heavy equipment operators than to repave a 3 mile track? :D

    Maybe someone could raise money to pay for the materials and have them pave it as part of their apprenticeship. Who knows. It would be terribly cool to see it back in it's original glory.


    "Homemade beer, after all, is like a democracy. Every so often, youíre gonna hate what comes out of it. But when itís good, itís the best." - woot.com

  14. #14
    Starter
    Points: 12,574, Level: 33
    Level completed: 90%, Points required for next Level: 76
    Overall activity: 1.0%
    Achievements:
    Veteran10000 Experience Points
    anticyclonic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Rathbun
    Posts
    752
    Points
    12,574
    Level
    33
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 0
    Given: 0

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Quote Originally Posted by SplitIdentity View Post
    I remember my dad telling me about it when I was little... he made mention of it every time we went down to the lake. Sounds like it was a lot of fun... to bad it's just another little piece of history Indianola let die.
    you mean Liberty Center



  15. #15
    Addict
    Points: 175,634, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 3.0%
    Achievements:
    SocialVeteran50000 Experience Points
    SplitIdentity's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ames
    Posts
    8,240
    Points
    175,634
    Level
    100
    Thumbs Up
    Received: 177
    Given: 23

    Re: Greenwood Roadway

    Quote Originally Posted by anticyclonic View Post
    you mean Liberty Center
    The first link says Indianola.


    The artist formerly known as SouthernHawk

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • TV: Cyclones.tv
  • HOOPS: Iowa State vs. Mississippi Valley State
  • December 31, 2014
  • 06:00 PM